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Press Release - Commemorating 70 Years of Trypanosomiasis Research and Control in Africa at the 35th ISCTRC General Conference

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18th September, 2019, Nairobi, Kenya

Trypanosomiasis is a major disease affecting human and animals in 38 countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Its effect on animal and human health is known to have direct impact on livestock productivity, livestock management and human settlement; through those direct impacts, the disease has indirect impacts on crop agriculture and human welfare. Changes in livestock management, human settlement and crop agriculture also result in changes in land use, vegetation cover and environment and human welfare. All of these have implications for resource use patterns, and investments in natural capital. With a wealth of evidence on the extent of the tsetse, human and animal trypanosomiasis problem, the opportunity for researchers and experts from a mix of disciplines to meet and put this evidence into clear perspective is both timely and invaluable. The International Scientific Council for Trypanosomiasis Research and Control (ISCTRC), a statutory Council of the African Union Commission will provide the scientific arena to enable this important discussion, including, review control strategies and recommendations for appropriate smarter methods of tsetse and trypanosomiasis
control, at its 35th General Conference. The ISCTRC shall also be commemorating its 70th year of existence.

Following 34 successful conferences, the 35th ISCTRC will be held in Abuja, Nigeria, from 23rd – 27th September 2019. The theme for this year is Impact of African Trypanosomiasis on Human and Animal Health, Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development in the face of challenges to sustainable investment in Animal African Trypanosomiasis (AAT) control and Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) elimination. The theme builds upon the 34th Conference that was held in Livingstone, Zambian that focused on ‘Capitalizing on the progress made against human and animal trypanosomiases – the way forward in partnership with all stakeholders.’ This year, the Conference will be hosted by the Government of Nigeria, thus providing an opportunity for the Federal Government of Nigeria to showcase its fight against tsetse and trypanosomiasis in Africa.

The biennial conference is jointly organized by the African Union InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Resources, (as the Secretariat of the International Scientific Council for Trypanosomiasis Research and Control), the Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomosis Eradication Campaign (PATTEC) and the Federal Government of Nigeria. For 70 years, since 1949, the Council has achieved its mandate of facilitating information sharing and exchange on matters regarding tsetse and trypanosomiasis research and control by holding regular biennial General Scientific Conferences.

Tsetse and trypanosomiasis research and control knowledge and practice are expanding. The 2019 conference programme will comprise over 100 presentations and discussions relating to the various subthemes and 9 sessions: PATTEC initiative and Country reports; PATTEC Open Forum: Achieving the mandate of Heads of States and Governments on eradicating tsetse and trypanosomiasis from the African continent; Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Campaign; Human African trypanosomiasis; Animal African Trypanosomiasis; Epidemiology and Control; Chemotherapy and drug resistance; the Tsetse fly Glossina species Biology; Socio-economic; Land use and environment.

A session will be allocated to the adoption of the research and control recommendations made by the Council on the control of tsetse and trypanosomiasis for the next two years.

At the end of the conference, the ISCTRC Award will be presented to 10 key sector players for their innovation and leadership in Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication. The Award has been established to acknowledge distinguished experts who have devoted a major part of their careers to the discovery and development of better control mechanisms in tsetse and trypanosomiasis research and control in the past 10 years.

The conference participants will comprise:

  • African Union Commission Staff (Commissioner of Rural Economy and Agriculture, Director of the Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture, Director African Union InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Resources (IBAR), Staff from AU-IBAR, AU-PATTEC, AU-PANVAC;
  • Scientists/Researchers from Universities in Africa and globally, and Research Institutes in Africa and Europe;
  • ISCTRC Executive committee Members comprising Regional representatives for Western, Eastern, Central, Northern and Southern Africa region; Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO); World Health Organization (WHO); International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); and the Programme against African Trypanosomiasis (PAAT);
  • Thirty eight (38) AU-Member States where tsetse and trypanosomiasis remains a challenge; and
  • Ministries of Animal Health, Health, etc. officials in charge of animal and human health in AU-Member State countries.
  • International Cooperating Partners.

The over 300 delegates from across the globe will also celebrate 70 years since the establishment of the council. Thus the event will not only strengthen networking amongst the tsetse and trypanosomiasis research and control workers, but will also provide an opportunity to reflect on the past years, consequently provide better planning on tsetse and trypanosomiasis research and control for the years ahead.

Notes to the Editor

About African Union InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR)

AU-IBAR is a specialized technical unit of the Africa Union’s Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture. It aims to provide leadership in the development of animal resources for Africa. By supporting and empowering the African Union member states and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs), AU-IBAR’s vision is of an Africa free from hunger and poverty in which animal resources make a significant contribution within the global arena. AU-IBAR was established in 1951 with the Headquarters at Nairobi, Kenya.

About Africa Union Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Campaign (AU-PATTEC)

AU-PATTEC was created following a decision by the African Heads of State and Government at the AU Summit in Lomé, Togo in July 2000 (Decision AGH/Dec.156-XXXVI). The Secretary General of the AU was charged with the task of initiating a campaign to eradicate the trypanosomiasis and tsetse flies menace from the African continent, once and for all. Consequently, a plan of action was elaborated to achieve this objective. The success of the PATTEC initiative will depend on the extent to which the affected countries will mobilize the necessary commitment to mount sustained action. The African Development Bank (ADB) collaborates and supports the PATTEC initiative.

About the International Scientific Council for Trypanosomiasis Research and Control (ISCTRC)

ISCTRC is a statutory Council of the African Union Commission with the Secretariat at African Union InterAfrican Bureau for Animal resources (AU-IBAR) in Nairobi, Kenya. It was established in the early 60s as a vehicle to promote international cooperation in the fight against trypanosomiasis which is one of Africa’s greatest constraints to socio-economic development, severely affecting human and livestock health, limiting land use, causing poverty and perpetuating underdevelopment on the continent.

For further information on the ISCTRC and 35th ISCTRC Conference programme visit the ISCTRC section.

For more information, please contact:
Prof. Ahmed A. El-Sawalhy
Director/Head of Mission, AU-IBAR
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Press Release - Commemorating 70 Years of Trypanosomiasis Research and Control in Africa at the 35th ISCTRC General Conference
Date 2019-09-20 Language  English Filesize 322.68 KB